Networks of Centres of Excellence of Canada
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Business-Led Networks of Centres of Excellence program

Business-Led Networks of Centres of Excellence program


As per Budget 2018, the Government announced the consolidation of the Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR) and the Business-led Networks of Centres of Excellence (BL-NCE) programs with the This link will take you to another Web site Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF). Innovation Canada is working with the NCE to implement these programming changes with minimal disruption to organizations currently funded by the CECR and BL-NCE programs.

In light of this, the NCE Secretariat will not be conducting any future call for proposals for the CECR and BL-NCE programs. I invite you to follow the link to SIF above to monitor potential funding opportunities.

The Business-Led Networks of Centres of Excellence program (BL-NCE) funds large-scale collaborative research networks that bring a wide range of research expertise to bear on specific challenges identified by an industrial sector. Led by a not-for-profit consortium of industrial partners, networks enhance private sector innovation by blending academic expertise with the private sector’s drive to respond to real-world challenges. BL-NCEs increase private sector investments in Canadian research, support training of skilled researchers, and accelerate the transfer of ideas from the laboratory into solutions needed by the private sector.

Quick facts

  • The BL-NCE program was created in 2007 to help address major private-sector R&D and commercialization challenges by drawing on universities, research organizations and the private sector.
  • The program’s partnership model places academic and private-sector partners on an equal level.
  • Matching requirements mean that at least half of each network’s research costs are paid by partners.
  • Unique among granting agency programs, the BL-NCE program allows networks to fund private sector partners directly so they can conduct research at their own facilities.
  • The program was made permanent in the 2012 federal budget, with annual funding of $12 million.

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